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Directory:Energy from Sewage

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Directory of technologies and resources related to harvesting energy from sewage and waste water.

See also Directory:Waste to Energy


  • Video: Waste to Energy -- an Overview (3:01 minutes) - A brief video by PES Network introduces the concept of cost-effectively turning garbage and sewage into energy, either as electricity or as fuel. Addresses methane harvesting, plasma, solar, and catalytic pressureless depolymerization. (PESWiki; Jan. 16, 2008)




  • Waste to Energy > Sewage / Microorganisms >
    Human waste power plant goes online in the UK - Brotish Gas has gone online with a sewage-to-biomethane plant that converts the treated sewage of 14 million Thames Water customers into clean, green gas and is pumping that gas into people's homes. Biomethane is created when bacteria known as anaerobic digesters break down organic material such as human or animal waste, food and household waste to produce a thick, odorless waste plus methane. (GizMag; October 5, 2010)
  • Waste to Energy > Sewage >
    UK Prepares to Use Human Poop to Power Homes - This summer British Gas ... will start piping biomethane from the sewage system — which is derived from fecal matter — right back into the homes of 130 customers in Oxfordshire. The new gas will take 23 days to complete its waste treatment cycle and when it enters homes will smell just like natural gas. (Inhabitat; Apr. 19, 2010)
  • British firm gets taste for 'poo power' - Britain's biggest water company, Thames Water, lifted the lid Monday on how it slashed costs by burning customers' faeces to make electricity.Energy is generated through either "thermal destruction", where dried blocks of "poo cake" are burned, or "anaerobic digestion", where the methane from sewage sludge is burned. (Energy Daily; Dec. 7, 2009)
  • Energy Products of Idaho (EPI) - World leader in atmospheric fluidized bed combustion technology with more than 81 installations world wide, and over 5 million hours of operating experience. EPI has completed energy systems operating on a wider variety of fuels than any any other fluid bed supplier in the world. Waste input: agriculture, wood, paper, livestock, fossil fuels, RDF (refuse), industrial, sewage. Output: electricity, steam/hot water, thermal fluids, hot gas for dryer.
  • Super Critical Water Oxidation - AquaCritox® is revolutionary technology which can completely destroy organic wastes and generate renewable energy. SCFI's AquaCritox® process uses the properties of supercritical water to provide an economical and sustainable solution for the management of liquid organic wastes. The technology provides a rapid, clean and sustainable method of dealing with liquid organic waste streams such as high strength industrial wastewater, sewage sludge and biosolids and enables precious metals recovery from catalysts.
  • Capstone MicroTurbine - As waste biodegrades at landfills, sewage treatment plants, livestock farms and food waste processing facilities, methane and other toxic gases are formed. Most sites flare those gases or let them vent into the air. Capstone MicroTurbines are turning that source of pollution into clean, renewable energy, to cut or virtually eliminate your facility’s power bills.
  • ThermoEnergy - Converting sewage sludge to a renewable high-energy fuel, and enabling the conversion of coal and other hydrocarbon fuels into energy with zero air emissions. The ThermoEnergy Integrated Power System combines the combustion of carbonaceous fuels with recovery of by-products by pressurizing the entire combustion system to enable the use of gas-to-liquid steam-hydroscrubbing.

Microbial Fuel Cells

See Directory:Microbial Fuel Cells - separate page

Going Commercial

  • First Biodiesel from Sewage - Marlborough-based Aquaflow Bionomic has produced its first sample of bio-diesel fuel from algae in sewage ponds. The company expects to be producing at the rate of at least one million liters of fuel per year from Blenheim by April. (New Zealand Herald; May 12, 2006) ([1]) (See Slashdot discussion)
  • LA to turn sludge into electricity - A new plant in Los Angeles, said to be the first of its kind in the U.S., injects material left over from treated wastewater into depleted oil and gas reservoirs underground, where high temperatures and pressure creates methane gas to power fuel cells on the surface. Powering around 3,000 homes, the process will also dissolve carbon dioxide and reduce the amount of treated solid waste. (PhysOrg; Apr. 6, 2007)

Research and Development

University of Massachusetts Amherst

  • New Microbe Strain Makes More Electricity, Faster - Researchers have coaxed Geobacter, the sediment-loving microbe who produce electric current from mud and wastewater, to evolve a new strain. It dramatically increases power output per cell (8x), overall bulk power, and with a thinner biofilm, cuts the time to produce electricity on the electrode. Now it is plausibe to begin designing microbial fuel cells for a myriad of applications including converting waste water to electricity. (NewsWise; July 29, 2009)

Penn State

  • Microbial fuel cell: high yield hydrogen source and wastewater cleaner - Using a new electrically-assisted microbial fuel cell (MFC) that does not require oxygen, Penn State environmental engineers and a scientist at Ion Power Inc. have developed the first process that enables bacteria to coax four times as much hydrogen directly out of biomass than can be generated typically by fermentation alone. (PhysOrg; April 22, 2005)


See Directory:Urine Power - separate page

Image:Pee-power Shanwen-Tao Rong-Lan Heriot-Watt-University Edinburgh 95x95.jpg Image:Tank fill-up yellow 95x95.jpg Image:Urine vial 95x95.jpg

Other Research

  • Sewage to energy conversion - The plasma gasifies the solids into burnable gases... the technology seems to be well in hand already. (Free Energy Blog; December 28, 2013)
  • Microorganisms / Waste to Energy > from Sewage >
    Microbial Breakthrough to Make Diesel Directly From Non-Food Plant Waste - A group of scientists from both the public and private arenas has announced that they’ve successfully engineered a strain of the microbe E. coli to contain all the bits required to turn raw plant matter directly into diesel without any refinement or intermediary steps required; and may be able to directly produce environmentally-friendly surfactants, solvents and lubricants. (Gas2; Jan. 28, 2010)
  • - Developing a process of low temperature thermochemical conversion of municipal sewage sludge into oil. It can also process agri-wastes, bagasse, pulp and paper residues, tannery sludge and other end-of-life products such as plastics, tires and the organics in municipal solid waste.
  • Ray of light for water industry - University of Aberdeen scientists developing new technology that uses sunlight to treat dirty water and create electricity simultaneously. Three industrial partners develop novel technology for breaking up pollutants found in all types of water supplies. (PhysOrg; UK; April 28, 2005)
  • Pollution-Eating Bacteria Produce Electricity - "These bacteria can convert a large number of different food sources into electricity. The technology could be used to assist in the reclamation of wastewaters, thereby resulting in the removal of waste and generation of electricity." (PhysOrg; June 7, 2005)
  • University of Warwick Converting Sewage Waste into Power - Dr. Ashok Bhattacharya and his team have cracked the problem of how to extract very pure levels of hydrogen from wet bio-matter, such as sewage or paper mill waste using a nanocrystalline catalyst. (The Hindu; May 30, 2004)
  • Wastewater: Energy of the future? - Professor Jurg Keller at Australia's University of Queensland said he and his colleagues have discovered how to turn wastewater into electricity. (PhysOrg; Nov. 2005)
  • Creative Energy Systems - Sewage and Landfill Clean-up with Energy Production; isolation of elements for recycling. Super-clean tire burner prototype operated 1 year. Full municipal waste and sewage to energy system has not yet to be assembled. Includes plasma technology.


  • Zip Project - Zero Impact Platform project was created to handle waste cycle and water cycle management with clean, renewable technologies available, as well as to support research and development into the same. (PESWiki; Aug. 5, 2005)


Finally found: the treasure at the end of the rainbow.
Finally found: the treasure at the end of the rainbow.

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